Content, classroom climate and the teacher-student relationship are three areas where educators can engage all students, educator Cheryl Mizerny writes. In this blog post, Mizerny shares tips based on practices often used by master teachers.
Preschool students participating in the Children Are Citizens program developed by Harvard's Project Zero are learning -- and teaching others -- about citizenship. Three states so far have piloted the program, including the District of Columbia, where students created an exhibit at the National Gallery of Art.
The National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators is proposing a three-pronged system for applying for aid. The move is in response to a proposal by two U.S. lawmakers that would reduce the number of questions on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid to two, an approach that would be an oversimplification of the process, NASFAA says.
A Tennessee school district will provide Chromebooks to third- to eighth-grade students to engage them individually and teach digital skills. The program expands on last year's pilot with seventh-graders, and continues to focus on using the computers for project-based learning, personalized instruction and instant feedback on student learning.
Teachers must get out of their comfort zones when dealing with new technology and take advantage of student knowledge to learn more, according to several student presenters at the recent ISTE 2015 conference. Teachers should also educate themselves on how to use tech tools and not be afraid to learn what works and what doesn't by experimenting in the classroom, they advised.
Teachers can boost student engagement and make projects more relevant by encouraging students to build websites to display their work, fifth-grade teacher Brandi Leggett writes. In this blog post, she notes that there are free platforms where students can design pages and share them with family and friends. "Authentic audiences instill motivation in students to do their best work," she writes.
Connected Worlds -- an installation at the New York Hall of Science -- uses sensors, cameras and projectors to create an immersive educational experience. "Allowing children to see the connections between their actions and what happens in the system -- making those connections visible -- really allows them to ask questions and test hypotheses in a way you can't really do in the classroom," said Theo Watson, a partner with the group that led the development of the installation.
Educators at a California middle school have redesigned science lessons to enable students to apply the scientific principles they are learning to explore and answer "big picture" problems of the real world such as climate change. The switch -- expected to take two years to complete -- is part of the implementation of the Common Core State Standards and the Next Generation Science Standards.
Some teachers are turning to free applications such as Trello and Slack to improve lessons and foster connection among students. Trello allows students to create visual to-do lists to manage tasks. Slack, which is similar to Twitter, can be used by teachers to communicate with students about assignments.
Teacher evaluations should focus on four major components of instruction -- behavior, teachers' content knowledge, instructional techniques and formative assessments, writes consultant and former principal Peter DeWitt. With these four components, he writes in this blog post, evaluations become learning tools and foster productive discussions between teachers and principals.